Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Garden Stuffed Tomatoes

Okay, so here is my gem of a recipe. We always grow tomatoes every year and even if ours don't produce until later we have friends who run a farm. So, fresh good tomatoes are always within reach during the season. But most people will ask, 'how do you use all them up?' Because once they are in season there's usually an overflow of ripened red tomatoes. Well, the smaller ones are usually made into salsa and whenever we have enough large ones we make this:

Garden Stuffed Tomatoes

Here's how you make them:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. *These can also be roasted on the grill! Mmm..

Dig out the top core of your tomatoes.  Toss it into your compost bin.

Cut a larger circle around and dig out the insides, while trying to pour off as much of the juice as possible and put in a medium bowl.

Drain off any extra liquid you can of the fillings, then chop into bite size pieces. I usually use my kitchen shears for this.

Add your bread crumbs, garlic powder, oregano, minced fresh basil leaves, feta cheese, dash of olive oil and kalamata olives to your tomato guts.  You can add salt if you want. We usually find the olives salty enough to not need it, or you can always salt at the table.  Mix it all up.

The mixture should be somewhat dry but not too dry. It won't hurt it one way or the other. It will still taste awesome, but it may just be a bit more soupy or more dry.

Then stuff this mixture into the hallowed out tomatoes. Place them in a cake pan or some kind of pan with a lip. The tomatoes will leak out juices while cooking.

Place them in your oven for 30-40 minutes.  Just keep checking on them. When you see the filling kind of bubbling then you know they're done to perfection.

Then enjoy your delicious harvest!

Here's a quick overview of what you'll need.  Keep in mind these are not exact measurements, because it depends on your taste and how many tomatoes you have to use up.  This recipe is very forgiving.  If you don't care for olives, omit them. So, adapt it to what you want just make sure to add enough bread crumbs to keep the mixture somewhat dry, but not crumbly.

Ingredients you'll need:

-Large tomatoes
-Dash of Olive Oil
-Feta (we use about 1/2 cup for about 5 tomatoes)
-Kalamata olives (we use about 1/2 cup for about 5 tomatoes)
-Fresh or dried basil (we use about 1/2 tablespoon of fresh for each tomato, but add to your taste preference)
-Garlic powder -to taste
-Oregano -to taste
-Salt- to taste
-Bread crumbs to dry mixture a bit (we use the panko bread crumbs, you could use the seasoned ones and then omit the added seasonings, but we try to avoid the hydrogenated ones so we stick with the panko crumbs)

Happy Cooking and God Bless!

Heather Joy

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